Free NLN Event in Columbus on April 19th

Apologies for cross-posting

Are you a current LIS student or a new library professional? Do you want to learn more about OCLC and central Ohio libraries? If so, you do not want to miss this event!

Join the New to Libraries Network for a day of engagement with librarians from all across central Ohio on Friday, April 19th, from 10am until 4pm. The day will begin with a presentation and tour at the Online Computer Library Center (OCLC) headquartered in Columbus Ohio. OCLC is best known for WorldCat, the world’s largest network of library content, but they are also known for their research, community programs and the major services they offer. In the morning you will have a chance to learn even more about OCLC and its role in furthering the mission of libraries throughout the world. There will be time to network and interact with your peers over lunch (self-serve, OCLC Café). Then in the afternoon you will have the opportunity to tour a local central Ohio library of prominence. You can choose to tour either The Ohio State University Thompson Library or the Columbus Metropolitan Library (Main Library).

You do not want to miss this exciting, free event. Register now to reserve your spot as space is limited. More details to come in the coming months!

*Transportation & lunch fees are not included

Questions, please email Christina Rodriques at


Navigating Ohio’s Library Organizations – A Recap


On December 5, 2018 NLN had the opportunity to partner with NEO-RLS to offer a webinar about Ohio’s many library organizations. The idea for this webinar grew out of the NLN board’s own confusion about Ohio’s many organizations – there are so many of them! We were hoping that by putting together the webinar we could create a resource for Ohio librarians and library staff to use going forward when trying to decide how to be involved professionally with these various groups.

First we made a master list of all of the Ohio library organizations we could think of. The list was really long! However, we learned pretty quickly that library organizations come and go, and some of the groups on the list no longer existed. We also organized the organizations into those that serve all library types, those that serve a specific library type, and those that serve a specific library type in a specific region of the state. Then we asked the groups to tell us about themselves! Many of them obliged and provided lots of great resources. For the ones that didn’t, we did some research ourselves to fill in the blanks. The result was a webinar with a lot of options!

If you’re interested, the link to the webinar handout and slides are available for you to peruse. And here’s a link to the full recording. We hope you find it useful!

Navigating Ohio’s Library Organizations Webinar

Join us for a FREE webinar titled “Navigating Ohio’s Library Organizations”!

December 5th, 2-3pm EST

Whether you’re new to libraries or a more experienced member of library land, you probably noticed that Ohio has a lot of library organizations! It can be confusing to navigate these organizations, determine what services they offer, and decide how to get involved with them. (Deciphering the acronym soup can be tough too!) This webinar, co-hosted by NEO-RLS and the New-to-Libraries Network, will provide an overview of the many Ohio library organizations and help you determine how to make the most of these important groups.

Register HERE!

The New-to-Libraries Network is Looking for New Board Members!

Are you a new professional or library school student in the Northeast Ohio area? Would you like an opportunity to gain leadership skills and network with others? Consider applying to be on the New-to-Libraries Network board! Members of the board virtually plan 4 in-person professional development events over the course of a year, and have the chance to meet new people, develop project management skills, and add to their resumes!

Application form due May 25th:

Please feel free to explore this site for more details, and/or email Mandi at a.goodsett[at] with questions or comments!

Image of event

An example of the kinds of event you could help plan for the benefit of your colleagues!

University Circle Tours Follow-Up

On Saturday, April 28th, the New-to-Libraries Network had the opportunity to participate in some wonderful tours of libraries in the University Circle area of Cleveland. Below are some pictures and details about our adventures. Thank you to everyone who made it, and we hope to have other tours events in the future, so hopefully those who couldn’t make it can join us then!

Cleveland Museum of Natural History Library & Archives

Our first tour took place in the Cleveland Museum of Natural History’s Library and Archives, and it was lead by Wendy Wasman, Librarian & Archivist. We got to see some really wonderful treasures, including a rare set of Audobon prints, one-of-a-kind sketchbooks, a very tiny book about space, and a hidden painting on the fore-edge of a book’s pages.


Checking out treasures of the Cleveland Museum of Natural History library collection

Lunch at the Cleveland Museum of Art Cafe

It was nice to take a break for lunch and meet some new friends! We had attendees from all types of libraries – public, school, special, and academic – as well as some Kent iSchool students.


What a fabulous group! 🙂

Cleveland Museum of Art Ingalls Library

Our high-energy tour guides, Lou Adrean and Matthew Gengler, gave us a wonderful overview of the Ingalls Library’s collections and very expansive footprint throughout the museum. We got to see where materials are stored, how they are retrieved, and where students like to study in the library. We also got a sense of some of the challenges of this library, including an ever-expanding collection in need of space to accommodate it.


The Ingalls Library’s own exhibit, using books as the art objects, of course!

Case Western Reserve University Kelvin Smith Library

One of NLN’s very own board members, Evan Meszaros, gave us a lovely tour of Case Western’s main library, the Kelvin Smith Library. We were treated to a look at the library’s preservation lab courtesy of Andrew Mancuso, the Preservation Officer. We also saw some of the cool technology and services available in the Freedman Center for Digital Scholarship, including the one-button production studio and ever-popular printing services desk for poster and other printing projects.


Cool gadgets to check out at the Kelvin Smith Library

Cleveland Institute of Art Library

We wrapped up our whirlwind day with a tour of CIA’s library, given by library director Laura Ponikvar. We saw how the library overcame challenges of space by repurposing rooms to meet the needs of students, and we had a lot of fun playing with interesting and unusual artist’s books kept in the collection. It was a wonderful way to end the day!


Checking out the installation of Schreckengost art in the Cleveland Institute of Art Library

Thank you again to everyone who joined us! If you would like to be involved in planning future library tours, consider applying to be on the NLN board. The application form will be going out soon!


Hope to see you all again soon! 🙂

Networking for Librarians Workshop Follow-Up


At the end of March, the New-to-Libraries Network hosted a professional development event centered around networking for librarians. Public librarians Maria Trivisonno and Jo Schofield from Cuyahoga County Public Library joined us to speak about their varied experiences with professional networking. Both shared their personal stories of their paths to librarianship and what they have learned through their committee work, conference attendance and other professional networking experience.

The common thread through both Maria’s and Jo’s stories was their willingness to put themselves out there, agree to available opportunities, and get involved. Each gave some practical steps and tips that new and established librarians can take to become more involved in the profession.

Their first suggestion was to become involved in professional library groups, whether at a statewide or national level. Maria and Jo have a variety of experience in this realm – Maria with Ohio Library Council (OLC) and Jo with multiple ALA divisions. Jo, who has spent time working on national committees, spoke of her experience with ALSC and RUSA (Reference and User Services Association), both subdivisions of ALA. Both Maria and Jo’s journeys to committee work have been tales of hard work and involvement; as they said yes to one opportunity, it opened them up to others. For example, Jo is currently serving as the chair of RUSA’s Sophie Brody Medal Committee, an opportunity which wouldn’t have arisen without Jo’s proactive approach to networking.

Maria and Jo provided the audience with a great breakdown of the different opportunities available to members of OLC and ALA, including committees, divisions and round tables. Jo suggested focusing on one area which you’re passionate about, rather than spreading yourself too thin. For example, Jo’s early career focused on children’s librarianship, but a job change shifted her focus to adult services. To match her new career focus, Jo shifted her committee focus to become more involved with those ALA subdivisions that align with her new position, becoming more involved with RUSA.

If you’re interested in getting involved with OLC, Maria suggested running to serve on a committee or division, which is typically a 2-year commitment. If you’re a new librarian, consider applying for ALA’s New Member Round Table (NMRT). There are a variety of positions available within the NMRT and experience with NMRT can be a stepping stone to additional committee work. (If you’re interested in learning more about these opportunities, visit the links at the bottom of this post.)

Looking for another way to get involved? Conferences are another great step toward building your professional network. Applying to present at a local or national conference may snowball into more professional opportunities. At a loss for what to speak about? Both Jo and Maria recommended focusing on the unique and interesting parts of your job. Do you serve an often-overlooked population? Have you created a unique program? Brainstorm about these types of distinct services and use them to carve out your niche. For example, Maria spoke of a Community Garden grant her branch received. In addition to successfully implementing a community garden at the library, Maria was later invited to speak about her experience at a national conference. Worried about going it alone? Work with a colleague or peer to identify and present on these topics. Maria spoke about opportunities at local conferences, specifically OLC and the Virginia Hamilton Conference at Kent State University.

Lastly, if committees seem too time intensive and conference presentations still scare you, Jo suggested writing reviews to boost your professional presence. Reviews help librarians establish a name for themselves, develop writing skills and stay on top of new titles. As a reviewer herself, Jo says that she receives about a book a month to review.


Inspired to get involved? Check out the links below for more information about OLC, ALA and other professional organizations:

(Note: You must be an ALA Member to access this form, which is used to volunteer for a particular committee of ALA, its divisions (ACRL, ALCTS, ALSC, ASCLA, LITA, LLAMA, PLA, RUSA, YALSA) and its round tables (EMIERT, ERT, GAMERT, GLBTRT, IFRT, IRRT,LIRT, NMRT, SRRT).)

-Rebecca Wendeln, M.L.I.S. Graduate Student, Kent State University

Join us for NLN University Circle Tours!

Join the New-to-Libraries Network for free library tours!

What: Free library tours!
Who: Anyone is welcome to join us (More experienced librarians welcome too!)
When: April 28, 2018
Where: University Circle, Cleveland

11-12pm Cleveland Natural History Museum Library & Archives Tour, Wendy Wasman
12-1pm Lunch at the Cleveland Museum of Art – Dutch treat (pay on your own)
1-2pm Cleveland Museum of Art, Ingalls Library Tour, Heather Saunders
2-3pm Case Western Reserve University, Kelvin Smith Library Tour, Evan Meszaros
3-4pm Cleveland Institute of Art Library Tour, Laura Ponikvar

Feel free to join us for some or all of the tours! Sign up at this registration link by April 25th to participate!